Shop often, shop hard, and spend for the best stuff available.
Logic dictates that you can make delicious food only with delicious ingredients.
~ Mario Batali
We went through the pantry of your suggestions and managed to put a little something for everyone on the table this week. It started with this item from the developers’ thinking table:
Hi, any chance that you can make the forcing slide column sortable, so that I can have them in order and easily go through them each week to “add 1″ in order to force that student to the next slide?
Here we go … The table can now be sorted on this FORCING column. If you have named your forcing slides with numbered prefixes, this comes in very handy. If not, you probably don’t care right now, but you probably will someday.
TA (Teaching Assistant) Time
We all know that the students are the most important figures in the education landscape. When it comes to getting the job done, however, the role of teaching assistant (TA) plays a critical role. Someone wrote:
I was wondering if it would be possible to see the THINGS TO GRADE box on the main page of Educator when we login as a TA. It would save many of us some needless clicks if it were on that page like it is on our own course page. We probably don’t need the CURRENT GRADE on our page; I would rather the THINGS TO GRADE instead. Thanks for thinking about it
It became time to update their TA dashboard to better reflect the role of teacher: Some old panels were removed and new ones added. Additions include THINGS TO GRADE and WHO’S BEEN DOING WHAT. The first is a shortcut to your workload. The latter will list most recent class submissions. Think of this as a new set of wheels for the TA. You no longer have to ride around in the student driver car.
Someone was kind enough to make us aware on Facebook:
Hi, I was wondering if it is possible to make it the default when I send emails and reply to student emails to have it “Send to Supervisor Email” instead of my checking that option. About 90% of the time, I would like parents to have a copy of the email. For the 10% that it does not apply, I could uncheck it. Thank you for your support!
Select EMAIL > EMAIL PREFERENCES.
Just below your signature will be the checkbox to send to supervisor email by default.
Reminder: the supervisor email must exist in VSA. If the email is not there or if it is incorrect, the same will hold true here.
The choice is yours to use this or not.
New for Content Developers
This one is NOT for the teachers. It’s for the hard-working content developers out there. One of them actually wrote …
The way assessments are re-ordered now is awful. Instead of manually setting all of the assessments, give us the ability to drag and drop to reorder them. (Similar to arranging our course lists.)
Course developers, do you remember this? Remember how many numbers needed to be changed when one was changed? Now take a look at this: Guess what? It’s now drag and drop! From now on … there is no need to use those numbers to change the Gradebuilder order. No longer are assessments grouped by TYPE. The modernized interface is strictly drag and drop. Are there any curriculum comments out there?
It’s important for me who is at the table with me; the moment when everyone speaks to each other and everyone listens.
If there’s good food, it’s much better.
~ Andrea Bocelli
Update Central: Reason for Exemption
Do you remember when we introduced the addition of the REASON FOR EXEMPTION in assignments? That same comment box now appears for quizzes/exams that can be made exempt for students. NOTE: The does not add the ability to exempt anything new. It simply creates a space that was needed for the prescriptive direction that Educator is heading.
If you manually exempt an exam/quiz, you will get the REASON FOR EXEMPTION field as shown. You will first have to set the manual score as ‘Ex’ (or ‘EX’, ‘ex’, ‘eX’), and then click outside of the “Manual Score” field in order for the REASON FOR EXEMPTION field to appear.
Update Central: Notifications
The engines that ran your notification system had gone down for a while. Now they are back and tuned better than ever!
Go to ANNOUNCEMENTS > NOTIFICATION CENTER. Experiment with whatever you like from this list. It might prove very helpful on days when your time is budgeted more than usual.
If you choose to try the ADVANCED NOTIFICATION SETTINGS, you must continue to remember:
- specify an email address
- set the email notifications function to ON
- set both days and times to receive notifications
- specify the courses to monitor
NOTE: At this time … paging should be ignored, as it duplicates the email feature.
We received this request:
I’m not sure if this has been suggested before, but frequently when a student sends me an email inside the system, I need to look at their gradebook to answer the question. Clicking on their name takes me to the student mail profile. It would pretty cool if that click, or a different link, took me directly to their gradebook view.
Others certainly agreed. It makes such great sense, doesn’t it? Where does clicking on a student name in your email actually bring you? Have you tried it? Look!
The link is already there! Give it a try.
PLEASE NOTE: This only shares the links to grade reports in classes for which you are the teacher, and the student is currently active. It’s amazing how we sometimes forget what’s right in front of us every day.
Time to get back into the kitchen here. Let us know what you think.
A lot of restaurants serve good food, but they don’t have very good service.
~ Wolfgang Puck